Source: The Teacher Educator, 50, p. 47–66, 2015
(Reviewed by the Portal Team)
This study aimed to investigate the motivating factors for choosing the teaching profession by nontraditional, post-baccalaureate candidates who had returned to higher education to pursue an initial teaching license at USA.
The participants were 346 candidates who were participating in either the Master of Arts in Teaching program or the state department of education’s nontraditional licensure program.
Data were collected through a survey.
The findings reveal that candidates chose to enter the teaching profession for a variety of reasons. Some candidates have been displaced from their previous positions due to downsizing or other reorganization and view teaching as an option for using their educational backgrounds or skillsets. Other candidates purposefully exit their current careers to enter the teaching profession.
The authors found that participants noted intrinsically motivated factors and more pragmatic motivators. The authors categorized the intrinsic motivators as noble causes, which included the opportunity to share their love for learning or to make a difference in society or students’ lives. The pragmatic motivators included the need for a career change or the perceived benefits of the teaching career.
The authors suggest that most candidates chose the field of teaching, because their motives are largely idealistic and altruistic.
The authors conclude that candidates should be informed that teaching can be intrinsically rewarding and does offer some unique extrinsic rewards as well.